ACMP Change Management Code of Ethics
Alignment to ACMP’s Vision
When the Association of Change Management Professionals (ACMP) launched in 2011, it represented a significant milestone in the field of Change Management. Other Change Management organizations can rightly claim specific areas of expertise, such as defining best practices supported through research, delivering knowledge and skills through training programs, creating unique methodologies which help shape strategy and execution, and providing quality consulting services. ACMP fills an equally important but complementary role, providing practitioners a professional association devoted to helping them to advance the discipline and increase change effectiveness around the world.
There are three required components in order to be considered a profession: the development of a unique set of professional standards, the creation and maintenance of a certification process, and the establishment of guidelines which govern the profession as a whole. Each is equally important, and ACMP cannot exist successfully without all three. To help guide the profession, ACMP has adopted the Change Management Professional Code of Ethics, which articulates the minimum expectations for professional conduct for Change Management practitioners. It establishes guidelines for responsible behavior and sets forth a common understanding for how to identify and resolve ethical dilemmas.
I. Purpose of ACMP’s Code of Ethics
The purpose of this Code of Ethics is to guide the professional conduct of members of the association, holders and applicants of ACMP-sponsored certifications, volunteers, ACMP Qualified Training Providers, staff, and contracted resources. This document addresses specific professional conduct for every individual bound by this Code.
II. Alignment of ACMP’s Ethics to the Change Management Standard
The ultimate goal of ACMP’s Code of Ethics is to outline and communicate minimum professional expectations to change practitioners. The tenets defined in this document support and complement the more specific behaviors and guidelines defined in ACMP’s Standards document.
III. Scope of Coverage
The Code of Ethics applies to the following individuals:
a. ACMP Members
b. ACMP Certificate Holders and Applicants
c. ACMP volunteers, staff, and contractors
d. ACMP Qualified Education Providers TM (QEP TM)
Structure of the Code
The ACMP Code of Ethics is divided into sections that contain tenets of conduct outlined within five duties identified as most important to the global change management community. These duties include: Honesty, Responsibility, Fairness, Respect, and Advancing the Discipline and Supporting Practitioners. This Code affirms these duties as the foundation for ethical and professional behavior for change management practitioners governed by this document. Descriptions and examples cited throughout this document are not intended to be prescriptive, but are instead included to provide practical illustrations of change management professionalism.
ACMP’s Code of Ethics is intended to promote ethical practices in the profession. Change management professionals are responsible for adding value to the organizations they serve and ethically contributing to the success of those organizations. Change practitioners accept personal responsibility for their decisions and actions. Each section of the Code of Ethics includes mandatory tenets that establish firm requirements, and in some cases, limit or prohibit specific behaviors. Practitioners who do not conduct themselves in accordance with these tenets may be subject to disciplinary procedures.
IV. ACMP ETHICAL STANDARDS
4.1 Duty of Honesty
Honesty is central to ethical behavior and ACMP’s values. Our duty is to demonstrate honesty through understanding the truth and acting in a truthful manner both in our communications and in our conduct.
Honesty in communications
As practitioners in the global change management community we demonstrate honesty in communications, conduct, and through our behavior in three significant dimensions by:
- earnestly seeking to understand the truth
- knowingly communicating with intent to express truth, ensuring that due diligence is undertaken to extract truth at every opportunity
- expressing truth in our communications in a way that is not likely to deceive or mislead
- providing accurate information in a timely manner
- acting with sincerity, communicating genuinely, and ensuring meaningful expression of intent
- making commitments and promises, implied or explicit, in good faith
- striving to create an environment in which others feel safe to tell the truth
- establishing relationships with legitimate expectations of frank, forthright exchanges based on mutual trust
- seeking to conduct all exchanges with others respectfully, emphasizing openness and frank discussion as critical to healthy communication
Honesty in conduct and behavior
As practitioners in the global change management community, we demonstrate honesty in conduct and behavior by:
- conducting ourselves always in a manner that consistently demonstrates our integrity
- engaging in honest behavior with the intention of preserving the integrity of self, the client or employer we represent and all other staff members
- engaging in behavior that demonstrates our consistent trustworthiness, acting on our core values in decision making with assured expectation and reliability
- acting consistently regardless of the situation, remaining dutiful in representing our personal and professional ethics through behavior and word assuming full responsibility for our own actions
4.2 Duty of Responsibility
Ethical responsibility is demonstrated through accountability while pursuing excellence and responding to expectations. Responsibility implies that we take full ownership for the decisions we make or fail to make, the actions we take or fail to take, and the consequences that result.
As practitioners in the global change management community we demonstrate duty of responsibility by:
- making decisions and taking actions based on the best interests of society, public safety, and the environment
- accepting only those assignments that are consistent with our background, experience, skills, and qualifications
- competently and completely fulfilling the commitments that we undertake – we do what we say we will do
- taking ownership of our errors or omissions and the resulting consequences, ensuring that communication to the appropriate body occurs. and that we make corrections promptly
- promptly communicating to the appropriate body any errors or omissions discovered that are caused by others
- protecting proprietary or confidential information that has been entrusted to us
- ensuring that key stakeholders are completely informed if developmental or stretch assignments being considered exceed our qualifications or skills thereby enabling our client/employer/co-workers to make informed decisions for our suitability for that particular assignment
- contracting for work that our organization is qualified to perform and assigning only
qualified individuals to perform the work
- upholding this Code and holding each other accountable to it
4.3 Duty of Fairness
Fairness involves representing ourselves in matters with consistency by evincing a commitment to impartiality, objectivity, openness, due process, and proportionality.
As practitioners in the global change management community we demonstrate duty of fairness by:
- treating all people equitably based on merit and ability
- dealing with each and every matter before us with consistency
- demonstrating transparency in the decision-making process using appropriate criteria without undue favoritism or improper prejudice
- conducting ourselves in a manner which is free from competing self-interest, prejudice, and favoritism
- constantly reexamining our impartiality and objectivity, taking corrective action as appropriate
- providing equal access to information to those who are authorized to have that information
- making opportunities equally available to all qualified candidates
- proactively and fully disclosing any real or potential conflicts of interest to the appropriate stakeholders
- refraining from engaging in the decision-making process or otherwise attempting to influence outcomes when we realize that we have a real or potential conflict of interest, unless or until we have made full disclosure to the affected stakeholders, we have an approved mitigation plan, and we have obtained the consent of the stakeholders to proceed
4.4 Duty of Respect
Respect is how we acknowledge and honor the absolute dignity of every person. As professionals we must continually show a high regard for ourselves, other people, reputation, the safety of others, and financial and other resources entrusted to us. An environment of respect engenders trust, confidence, and performance excellence by fostering mutual cooperation, which in turn supports an environment where diverse perspectives and views are encouraged and valued.
As practitioners in the global change management community we demonstrate duty of respect by:
- informing ourselves about the norms and customs of others and avoid engaging in behaviors they might consider disrespectful
- listening to others’ points of view, and seeking to understand them
- approaching directly those persons with whom we have a conflict or disagreement
- conducting ourselves in a professional manner, even when it is not reciprocated
- treating others with dignity and expect the same of our colleagues
- acting with compassion and sensitivity to the feelings and needs of others
- negotiating in good faith
- refraining from using our expertise or position to influence the decisions or actions of others
- refusing to act in an abusive manner toward others
- respecting the property rights of others
4.5 Duty of Advancing the Discipline & Supporting Practitioners
Advancing the discipline and supporting practitioners to lead and practice ethical change management is at the core of the formation of ACMP. Through creating a community of professionals who share an ethos of consistently striving to deliver best practice and added value for their clients or employers, we advance the discipline of change management into a recognizable, respected profession.
As practitioners in the global change management community we demonstrate our collective ethos to advance the discipline by:
- committing to share our knowledge, experience and tools to build consistency in value for clients or employers to the fullest extent possible without violating agreements of intellectual property rights with the clients or companies which the practitioner is associated
- supporting practitioners through undertaking cutting edge research and sharing those findings
- enabling ongoing education and accreditation within the framework of the Standards of ACMP for the profession
- advocating for the profession by engaging in activities that enhance its credibility and value
- teaching at every opportunity – our clients, our peers, our employers and employees, and other practitioners and the global community
V. Adjudication and Appeals Process
The ACMP Board of Directors will appoint an Ethics Inquiry Task Force to review complaints and/or inquiries pursuant to procedures approved by the ACMP Board and made public. Ethical inquiries and or complaints will be submitted through the Ethics Inquiry form, reviewed and adjudicated through the Ethics Inquiry Task force, with findings/responses communicated to the complainant or inquirer and the ACMP Board of Directors. Violations of the ACMP Code of Ethics may result in sanctions by ACMP.